How much is the salary of a UK automotive engineer in 2018?

automotive engineer salary uk

According to The Engineer‘s 2018 Salary Survey, the average salary of UK automotive engineers responding to our survey is £48,967, up marginally from 2017 (£48,100) and very close to the average for engineering overall.

The UK’s car industry, for many years a significant manufacturing success story, has been struggling in recent months.

Concerns about future customs arrangements post-Brexit, and a drop in both overseas and particularly domestic demand for cars have led to fears over future growth in the sector. These fears have been fuelled by announcements of job losses at car makers such as Jaguar Land Rover, and concerns about the Government’s lack of support for diesel vehicles.

Average automotive engineer salary by seniority*

Junior engineer£32,163
Senior engineer/manager£48,908
Director or above£81,227

*All data from The Engineer Salary Survey 2018. 

Despite recent job losses, however, the industry remains a huge employer, and that can be seen in the respondents to our survey, of whom engineers in the automotive sector consistently make up the biggest group. In 2018, 12.3 per cent of respondents described

themselves as automotive engineers.

The average salary of those responding to our survey from the sector in 2018 is £48,967, up marginally from 2017 (£48,100), and very close to the average for engineering overall.

Both junior engineers and senior engineers and managers working in the automotive sector can also expect to earn salaries close to the overall average for engineers as a whole, at £32,162 and £48,908 respectively.

However, directors in the automotive industry are the highest earners among all our sectors in 2018, having seen their average salary increase from £74,992 in 2017 to £81,226 this year, although this jump may be the result of the sample size.

Average automotive engineer salary by region*

South West England£38,933
Scotland/Wales or NI£39,364
Outside UK£40,674
North of England£46,528
Midlands or East Anglia£51,615
London or SE England£56,954

*All data from The Engineer Salary Survey 2018. 

Automotive engineers working in London and the South East earn the highest wages, on average, at £56,954, up from £50,737 in 2017. By far the largest group of engineers from the sector responding to our survey (44.2 per cent) work in the Midlands and East Anglia, however.

Engineers in the automotive industry are broadly content, with over half happy in their jobs and 35.7 per cent content with their salary, putting them second only to those in the energy sector. They are also the most likely to expect to remain in the industry for the next five years, at 85.6 per cent.

The Engineer’s 2018 Salary Survey was conducted in partnership with technical recruitment consultancy CBSbutler

Click here for the full results of the Salary Survey. 

Click here for The Engineer’s Salary Calculator.